Volunteer Opportunities


Are you interested in volunteering? Here at Nature’s Edge we are always in need of volunteers.

  • Do you like to garden?
  • Do you like to spend time with animals?
  • Do you have organizational skills?

If you answered “Yes!” to any of these questions, we invite you to join our team, enhance your skills and contribute to our success.  Volunteers perform integral roles at our center.  In fact, it would be impossible for us to achieve our mission without them.

Volunteering Opportunities include:

  • Facility maintenanceIMG_5037
  •  Small animal care and feeding
  •  New construction
  •  Large animal care and feeding
  •  Assisting in fundraising
  •  Tack care
  •  Assisting in therapy sessions, including hippotherapy sidewalkers
  •  General cleaning
  •  Gardening/landscaping
  •  Stable attendant

If you would like to volunteer at Nature’s Edge, please complete both the “Volunteer Intake Forms” and the “Background Information Disclosure (BID)” forms and return them to the center.

A word from our volunteers

What our volunteers have to say about us…


“This summer was the first year I came to volunteer here and I have to say, it was one of the best decisions I have made. Everyone at Nature’s Edge is so wonderful! They always let you know how grateful they are for everyone’s hard work. I am super glad I came to Nature’s Edge and I will definitely be coming back!”

“Love this place! In all the time I’ve spent here volunteering not a second went to waste. 🙂 I have also seen how much they help their patients. Truly amazing what they do here.”

“I have volunteered my time helping out with client group activities, photography, side walking,and grooming/exercising the animals! I have seen amazing treatment/activities given by the therapists to increase the self confidence and the progress of the clients abilities! The volunteers/staff are so welcoming and friendly. The scenery, nature, and farm animals are so calming and soothing! I usually come to volunteer 1-2 times a week! Volunteering here has helped my self confidence, mood and exercise in many abundant ways! I really love coming to this amazingly awesome, Nature’s Edge Therapy center!”

“Love this place!  In all the time I’ve spent here volunteering no a second went to waste. 🙂 I have also seen how much they help their patients.  Truly amazing what they do here.”

“I had a good time and I helped with the horses. I got to eat lunch with the Reminiscing on the Farm group. Gymir is my favorite horse!”

“I had a great time at Nature’s Edge. I hope to come again. It was fun grooming the horses and to meet new people. I made some new friends. I hope next time I come it will be as fun as today!”

“It was awesome to tell the Seniors stories about the animals. The animals seemed like they had fun to. The Seniors seemed like they had fun. It was really cool to see the animals and
Seniors interact with each other.”


Settling In


Simba is settling in very nicely here at Nature’s Edge. We have been working him into the schedule for training and he is responding extremely well. He was even brought in on a therapy session working on ground work and desensitizing and did amazing! Simba has also had the pleasure of meeting all his herd mates. He was separated from the big bad bully Boo until the footing cleared up, and about a week ago he had his chance. Up until then we had them separated into two groups and introduced Simba to all his new friends without the threat of being bullied, but about a week ago the footing in the pasture cleared up enough to allow everyone to mingle together. They were all so happy that they took off frolicking through the pasture until Big Bad Boo realized he had a new herd mate and the chase began. After a little bit of running and Boo establishing that he was top of the herd (right behind Svali that is) they all settled down to munch on what little grass they could find and some hay. They’ve all been hanging out together in one big happy group since then.

Schedule now open for 2017 “Reminiscing on the Farm” sessions

With summer on it’s way, even if it doesn’t feel like it with this new snow, we are starting to prepare for our “Reminiscing on the Farm” program again. The “Reminiscing on the Farm” program for seniors will be offered on Wednesdays, beginning May 24 through September 6, 2017. Programs typically begin at 10:30 a.m. and conclude close to noon.
This unique program takes place in our rustic barn or on the green lawns of Nature’s Edge. Seniors have the opportunity to enjoy an outing to our peaceful farm setting, interact with a variety of farm animals and share stories with our staff, volunteers and with each other, as we all reminisce together about days on the farm, country life and a love of animals. Senior groups are invited to bring a picnic lunch. An apple dessert will be provided at the conclusion of the Reminiscing session. Family members and caregivers are invited to attend and participate. Volunteers are invited to help with the Reminiscing sessions. All volunteers must complete volunteer forms.
The “Reminiscing on the Farm” program is provided through a grant from Bader Philanthropies – Helen Bader Foundation. Click here for an informational brochure. To schedule a session, call our office at 715-859-6670 or email us at naturesedge@citizens-tel.net

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Spring Fever

With the warmer weather on its way we are getting back into shape and getting ready for a fun-filled and busy summer. Much to the disappointment of the horses this also means they have to come out of winter vacation and start getting into better shape as well. With the help of our good friend Ed the horses (and us!) are getting some great advice and training in. We are learning tons and advancing our long lining and training skills greatly. We can’t thank Ed enough for all his wonderful help!

Nature’s Edge Welcomes Simba

January 25 we welcomed a new team member to Nature’s Edge. Simba is a 9 year old registered red roan Gypsy Vanner that comes to us from LexLin Gypsy Ranch in Tennessee.  He’s very willing and eager to please whoever is working with him, loves to be scratched, and loves being around people in general. When entering the pasture Simba is one of the first ones to greet you. We are excited to have Simba join the Nature’s Edge family!

Evening in Elegance



Nature’s Edge Therapy Center’s
Evening in Elegance Gala

Friday Evening, January 20, 2017


The Elks Club

Rice Lake, WI

Please join us and support our mission for our biggest fundraiser of the year, a semi-formal dinner event.  The evening starts with hors d’oeuvres during social hour, along with silent auction items on display for bid. At 6:45, dinner is served, with your choice of King Cut Prime Rib, a Boneless Chicken Breast with Burgundy Mushroom Sauce, or a Vegetarian Entrée.

After dinner the live auction begins, with dozens of items for every budget. We will also be conducting a Delicious Desserts auction.

Following the auction, from 9pm to midnight, we will be entertained with live music by the Dean’s List Orchestra to top off a beautiful evening with dancing, or just relax and enjoy the music!

Reservations are required and tickets are $50 per person. Call 715-859-6670 or email Becky at naturesedge@citizens-tel.net.

We also welcome donations! If you have something you think would be suitable for this fundraiser, please call the center. As always, donations to Nature’s Edge are tax deductible.

All proceeds from the evening benefit Nature’s Edge Therapy Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization providing unique and highly effective therapy to people of all ages coping with a variety of disabilities, including autism, brain injury, cerebral palsy and others. This specialized therapy is in great demand, and we are the only center in our area of this kind, Many patients require financial support to obtain it, and it is through your help that we are able to achieve our goal of helping those in need. We hope to see you there, and truly appreciate your support of our patients and our mission!


Animal Assisted Therapy

More than simply spending time with an animal, Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT) is a therapist-guided experience designed to improve a patient’s mental, physical, social and emotional functioning. At Nature’s Edge, our therapy animals include dogs, cats, chinchillas, donkeys, llamas, pot-bellied pigs, cows, parrots and ferrets, each chosen for their characteristics in relation to the patient’s specific goals.
For example, a patient with difficulty in the areas of concentration, communication and fine motor control will be encouraged to pay attention to a story.  The patient is then introduced to a parrot and will take turns with the parrot, repeating specific words and turning pages, as directed by the therapist.
Each animal-assisted therapy session is documented and the patient’s progress is evaluated on an ongoing basis.

What are the benefits of animal-assisted therapy?
 Improved fine motor skills
 Improved wheelchair skills
 Improved balance
 Lower blood pressure

 Increased verbal interaction
 Increased attention skills
 Development of leisure skills

 Increased self-esteem
 Reduced anxiety
 Reduced loneliness

Increased vocabulary
Improved long- and short-term memory
Improved knowledge of concepts, such as size, color, etc.

Wisconsin specialists in animal-assisted therapy
We encourage you to contact us at Nature’s Edge to learn more about our Wisconsin animal-assisted therapy services!

Therapy at Nature’s Edge

Specializing in autism, traumatic brain injury and cerebral palsy, the fully-licensed therapists at Nature’s Edge provide intensive therapy services for patients of all ages, facing a wide variety of disorders. In addition to speech, occupational and physical therapies, our specially-trained staff employs three extraordinary treatment tools – hippotherapy (equine/horse-assisted therapy), animal-assisted therapy and horticulture therapy – using the natural environment of our 65-acre ranch. Our family-centered approach provides both the patient and his/her caregivers with comprehensive tools they can use for a lifetime, and even offers an intensive inpatient program through Diane’s House where they can live and work together on these skills.

Outpatient Clinic

Nature’s Edge Therapy Center provides skilled speech, occupational and physical therapies to patients of all ages through our year-round outpatient clinic. Therapist, patient and family all team together to set goals and achieve out-comes. All therapies focus on discovering and developing patent abilities and utilize the multi- dimensional sensory and affective stimuli of the natural setting and the human-animal bod to realize potentials.

Innovative Therapy

Hippotherapy: Takes place in a controlled setting, using activities on and with the horse to provide sensory input that elicits adaptive responses from the patient.

Horticulture therapy: Uses an appreciation of nature and gardening in a therapy session.

Animal-assisted therapy: Utilizes animals as part of a therapy session to accelerate progress and promote the human-animal bond.